I am an abstract painter and mixed media artist based in the Chicago area. Born in 1978 in Morris, IL, I have practiced and exhibited art since age 8. I received my BFA in painting, printmaking and drawing from Millikin University
in 2000, focusing my work on gestural abstraction and process-driven experimentation.
I lived in Chicago for 8 years, exhibiting extensively, including Judy A Saslow Gallery
, The Artist Project (an independent artists' fair in conjunction with Art Chicago) and a solo exhibition at Stephen Kelly Gallery. I have received two CAAP project grants from the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs
and several curator's choice awards. My largest work to date, a public mural
, is on display in my former West Bucktown neighborbood, and my work is featured prominently in many private art collections
I have participated in artists' collectives and on committees for such not-for-profit organizations as the Chicago Artists Coalition
. I have hosted, curated and coordinated numerious exhibitions and open studio events. Currently living and working in the Elgin area, I own and operate swell gallery
, a permanent exhibition space from which I curate bi-monthly exhibitions along with fellow artist nikki hollander
, and continue to explore independent and collaborative art making.
I create abstract paintings that explore color relationships and textural varieties through a materials focused approach, layering a variety of mediums and materials onto canvas and wood in a collagist fashion.
Although my primary medium is acrylic, I also use latex, spray enamel, gouache and other paint products, along with a variety of acrylic mediums and mark-making tools such as pastels, markers, pencils and charcoal. I cultivate texture through both reductive and additive techniques, carving into wood and paint, and adding paper, fabric, wood, plastic and other collage elements to the surface.
I do not plan compositions, but rather select materials based on color or shape and apply them one after another to several works-in-progress in succession, allowing the progress of each piece dictate my decision making. This spontaneous and intuitive process results in layered, dimensional abstract paintings with exuberant colors, varied surfaces and playful personalities, in a recognizable style punctuated by rounded shapes, crisp lines and structural division of space.
My work is influenced by flashes of visual detail, both imagined and real, that I have observed and retained throughout my life, as well as by contemporary abstract art dating from the past hundred or so years. I aim to create work that relates to modern and contemporary art historical themes and evokes a sense of familiarity, but exudes undeniable uniqueness.